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J. Eng. Technol. Manage. 23 (2006) 221­247 www.elsevier.com/locate/jengtecman

The impact of leader personality on new product development teamwork and performance: The moderating role of uncertainty

Zvi H. Aronson *, Richard R. Reilly, Gary S. Lynn

Wesley J. Howe School of Technology Management, Stevens Institute of Technology, Castle Point on Hudson, Hoboken, NJ 07030, United States Available online 4 August 2006

Abstract We examined the affect of leader personality on new product development (NPD) project performance under differing conditions of uncertainty. Our model posits teamwork as a mediating variable between leader personality and NPD performance. We hypothesized that the personality variable of openness would have a stronger influence on teamwork and NPD performance when uncertainty was high, and that the personality variables of extraversion, conscientiousness and stability would have a stronger indirect influence on NPD performance through teamwork when uncertainty was low. We used structural equation modeling to test two models of the influence of personality. In our study of 143 development projects, we support the importance of teamwork as a process variable linking leader personality to NPD performance and confirm that the effects of leader personality on these criteria depend on the level of uncertainty operating in NPD projects, thus substantiating all our hypotheses. Recommendations to re-consider hiring criteria and training for NPD project leaders are provided. # 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

JEL classification: 030 Keywords: Leader personality; Teamwork; New product development projects

1. Introduction In today's dynamic workplace, organizations must increasingly contend with varying degrees of uncertainty resulting from global competition, economic changes, turbulent or new markets and changing technology. Uncertainty, it can be argued, increases the need for effective

* Corresponding author. Tel.: +1 201 216 5032; fax: +1 201 216 5385. E-mail address: [email protected] (Z.H. Aronson). 0923-4748/$ ­ see front matter # 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved. doi:10.1016/j.jengtecman.2006.06.003

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leadership in organizations and projects. Researchers such as Atuahene-Gima (2003), Brown and Eisenhardt (1995), Barczak and Wilemon (2001), Clark and Fujimoto (1991) and Sheremata (2000) demonstrate that leader behaviors can enhance or impede project performance. Scholars including Atuahene-Gima (2003), Gupta and Wilemon (1990), Hoegl et al. (2003), Jassawalla and Saahittal (1999), Lynn and Akgun (2003) and Moenaert and Souder (1990) document the value of teamwork behavior for project performance which has strong implications for leadership. The project leader is a pivotal figure, critically affecting both the process and performance of the new product development project. Several behaviors of the project team leaders are particularly germane. These individuals are highly effective in obtaining resources such as more personnel and larger budgets for the project team, and are able to keep teams motivated and focused. Project team leaders also facilitate teamwork and are small-group managers of their project teams. Such leaders often are central to the creation of the overall product concept and communicate it to project team members (Atuahene-Gima, 2003; Sheremata, 2000; Brown and Eisenhardt, 1995). We are concerned with understanding what personality traits are characteristic

Fig. 1. Model: impact of leader personality on new product development teamwork and performance for high and low uncertainty conditions. * The relevant leader personality trait will have a stronger positive effect on NPD teamwork under low levels of uncertainty. ** The relevant leader personality trait will have a stronger positive effect on NPD teamwork and project performance under high levels of uncertainty. + The agreeableness of the leader is not expected to influence NPD project outcomes under either level of uncertainty.

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of leaders who are successful on these tasks. Personality traits seek to describe and predict the typical behavior of individuals (e.g. Reilly et al., 2002; Stevens et al., 1999). For example, we center our attention on the personality traits of the project leader that should ensure success on the creative task of developing an effective product concept to present to the customer and facilitate teamwork under varying degrees of uncertainty. We are also concerned with illuminating the processes by which leader personality affects the success of a new product development project. To address these concerns, we empirically investigate the effect of leader personality traits on new product development project performance, via its effect on teamwork under different levels of uncertainty operating in the context of new product development projects. Our review of the literature is guided by our model and graphs presented in Figs. 1­3. We begin with a description of the teamwork performance link. Then, we present the links between leader personality traits and new product development (NPD) teamwork and performance under differing conditions of uncertainty facing NPD projects. 2. Theoretical background 2.1. NPD teamwork­performance link NPD projects typically have members with a mix of functional backgrounds and competencies. Researchers show that effective cross-functional integration in NPD teams can enhance project outcomes (Dyer and Song, 1998; Norton et al., 1994; Parry and Song, 1993; Pinto et al., 1993; Sicotte and Langley, 2000; Xie et al., 1998). The level of information sharing, the degree of coordination, and the extent of joint involvement between these members in specific NPD tasks is important (Clark and Fujimoto, 1990, 1991; Wheelwright and Clark, 1992; Song

Fig. 2. Theoretical effect of uncertainty on the relationship between NPD leader personality and teamwork. An example for conscientiousness, extraversion and stability. -- The agreeableness of the leader is not expected to influence NPD project outcomes under either level of uncertainty.

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Fig. 3. Theoretical effect of uncertainty on the relationship between NPD leader personality and teamwork and success. An example for leader openness.

et al., 2000). Information sharing, coordination and joint involvement are examples of behaviors captured by the concept of teamwork (e.g., Ellis et al., 2005; Stevens and Campion, 1994). Several scholars emphasize the importance of teamwork behaviors (e.g. Ancona and Caldwell, 1992; Hitt et al., 1993; Gupta and Wilemon, 1990; Kernaghan and Cooke, 1990; Keller, 1994; Moenaert and Souder, 1990; Pinto and Pinto, 1990). Hoegl et al. (2003) note that teamwork positively impacts team effectiveness across various task environments. Recent work identifies teamwork as a critical factor significantly associated with the outcomes of a NPD project (Lynn and Akgun, 2003). In the current study, we center our attention on an extensive range of NPD teamwork behaviors defined by Lynn and Akgun. They included: acknowledging conflict and working to resolve issues on the team, encouraging diverse perspectives from others on the team, demonstrating interest and enthusiasm during team activities, acknowledging the contributions made by others on the team, working together toward a unified goal and freely sharing information (e.g., technical, market) with others on the team. Our research focuses on teamwork as one mechanism by which leader personality affects NPD project performance. In the next sections, we portray the links between the personality traits of the leader and NPD teamwork and performance under different levels of uncertainty. We first describe leader behaviors that foster teamwork, then, depict the five-factor model of personality we use as a framework for organizing the research on leader personality traits. 2.2. Leader behaviors fostering teamwork One important characteristic of an effective leader is the ability to manage the team. This includes taking actions that serve to coordinate and facilitate team members in their efforts (Barczak and Wilemon, 2001). While studies by Kerr and colleagues (e.g., Howell et al., 1986; Kerr, 1977; Kerr and Jermier, 1978) note that specific situational variables can substitute or neutralize the effectiveness of leader behavior, in the context of NPD, the perspective of some scholars, described below, is that collaborative behaviors can rarely emerge in project teams unless team leaders take specific steps to create an environment of trust, creativity, and collaboration (e.g., Jassawalla and Saahittal, 2002).

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Several researchers describe the project leader as one of the forces that pull a project team together to ensure unified effort among team members. Such a leader is an integrator because he or she is able to motivate a team for collective action (e.g., Badawy, 1995; Atuahene-Gima, 2003; Sheremata, 2000). This person is able to coordinate and solve problems among and between team members and other functional groups (Clark and Fujimoto, 1990, 1991). Effective team leaders build collaboration and accelerate new product development processes principally because they understand the complex developmental process by which collaborative behaviors are learned by participants. They understand that transforming linear new product development processes ­ where each functional group makes its part of the new product decision and hands its output over the wall to the next group ­ into organic processes is essential for harvesting the innate talents and creativity of people. What personality traits are characteristic of leaders engaging in these behaviors that ensure teamwork among NPD project members? We organize our review of the leader personality teamwork relationship using the five-factor model (FFM) of personality, described next. 2.2.1. Personality as captured by the five-factor model The five-factor model represents the current orthodoxy in personality assessment and is a simple, robust, and comprehensive way of understanding fundamental personality differences (Barrick and Mount, 1991; Kichuk and Wiesner, 1997; McCrae and Costa, 1996). Although it has its critics, general consensus suggests that it adequately captures the content domain of personality (Wiggins, 1996). The dimensions comprising the FFM are emotional stability, openness to experience, conscientiousness, agreeableness, and extraversion (often termed the Big Five). Emotional stability is the extent to which an individual is calm, enthusiastic, poised, and secure, versus depressed, angry, emotional, and insecure. Openness to experience is the extent to which an individual is imaginative, sensitive, intellectual, polished versus down to earth, insensitive, narrow, crude, simple. Conscientiousness is the extent to which an individual is careful, thorough, achievement-oriented, responsible, organized, self-disciplined, scrupulous versus irresponsible, disorganized, undisciplined, unscrupulous. Agreeableness is the extent to which an individual is good-natured, gentle, cooperative, forgiving, hopeful versus irritable, ruthless, suspicious, uncooperative, inflexible. Extraversion­introversion is the extent to which an individual is sociable, talkative, assertive, active versus retiring, sober, reserved, cautious. Meta-analytic research (e.g., Barrick and Mount, 1991; Hurtz and Donovan, 2000; Tett et al., 1991; Salgado, 1997) suggests that personality traits, as measured by the FFM, have considerable utility for predicting how people behave and perform in the workplace. Of particular interest is evidence (Tett et al., 1994; Day and Silverman, 1989; Barrick and Mount, 1991) that specific personality traits are related in predictable ways to performance in certain kinds of jobs. A recent meta-analysis by Judge et al. (2002) provides support for the relevance of the FFM as a framework for organizing personality traits in leadership research. We next portray the uncertainty NPD projects face and then examine the influence of leader personality traits on NPD teamwork and performance in this context. 2.3. The moderating effect of uncertainty on the leader personality-teamwork link Our central contingency hypothesis is that the effects of leader personality on teamwork and performance will depend on the levels of uncertainty development projects face.

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Uncertainty refers to the inability to completely understand or accurately predict some aspect of the environment as it relates to NPD project decisions (Gifford et al., 1979; Jurkovich, 1974; Milliken, 1987). Uncertainty arises primarily from two sources: the technology and market (Burns and Starker, 1961; Lynn and Akgun, 1998). For example, an NPD project leader may be faced with a product technology that is well understood, highly developed and, thus, straightforward in application. Alternatively, the product technology may be perceived as undeveloped and unknown and, thus, as requiring trial-and-error research. Past research suggests that the ``modes of thinking'' adopted by leaders differ depending on whether or not these individuals face a great deal of uncertainty about their environment (Milliken, 1987). For stable, mature settings, facing incremental NPD project leaders, the dominant problem-solving model is characterized by planning and concurrent development activities (Brown and Eisenhardt, 1995). For more unpredictable, uncertain settings, facing radical NPD project leaders, the dominant problem-solving model is characterized by experiential and iterative product development (Brown and Eisenhardt, 1995; Eisenhardt and Tabrizi, 1995). For example, we are concerned with understanding whether under uncertain settings, characteristic of radical NPD projects, leaders high on a specific personality trait, are more likely to succeed on the necessary trial-and-error research tasks that involve learning through experience, than leaders who are low on this trait. To date, we know of no research that has tested our central contingency hypothesis, in the context of new product development. We review below the effect of uncertainty on the link between leader personality, teamwork and NPD project performance, using the FFM as a framework. 2.3.1. Conscientiousness Conscientiousness impacts several leadership components, such as goal setting, motivating others, and task orientation (Aronoff and Wilson, 1985; Barrick and Mount, 1993; Costa and McCrae, 1992). Researchers (Taggar et al., 1999) document that conscientiousness is strongly related to emergent leadership. Conscientiousness is also related to overall job performance (Barrick and Mount, 1991), and this suggests that leader conscientiousness should be related to leader effectiveness (Judge et al., 2002) in NPD project teams. Under conditions of high uncertainty, characteristic of radical NPD projects, it is not helpful to plan, rather, maintaining flexibility and learning quickly through improvisation and experience yield effective process performance (e.g., Eisenhardt and Tabrizi, 1995). Conversely, under more certain conditions, for stable and relatively mature products such as mainframe computers, product development is a complex task for which tactics such as extensive planning and overlapped development stages are appropriate. These tactics assume, a certain but often complex problem-solving task that can be rationalized (Brown and Eisenhardt, 1995). Researchers suggest that leaders should be persistent in their activities and follow through with their plans and conscientious individuals are persistent (Goldberg, 1990; Kirkpatrick and Lock, 1991). Moreover, conscientious individuals are task-focused (McCrae and Costa, 1987). Accordingly, a highly conscientious NPD project leader should encourage other project members to be more attentive to the plan and engender these members to work together toward a unified goal. Taken together, we propose that leader conscientiousness will have a stronger positive effect on teamwork under low levels of uncertainty that exist when innovation is incremental. Hypothesis 1. The relationship between leader conscientiousness and NPD teamwork will be stronger when the degree of uncertainty is lower.

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2.3.2. Agreeableness Agreeableness represents the degree to which someone shows personal warmth, a preference for cooperation over competition, and trust and acceptance of others (McCrae and Costa, 1987). However, the link between agreeableness and leadership is conceptually unclear (Judge et al., 2002). On the one hand, cooperativeness tends to be related to leadership (Bass, 1990), and interpersonal sensitivity has been related to leadership (Zaccaro et al., 1991). Altruism, tact, and sensitivity have been described as characteristics of an agreeable personality which would suggest that leaders should be more agreeable. On the other hand, agreeable individuals tend to be modest (Goldberg, 1990), and leaders are not likely to be excessively modest (Bass, 1990, p. 70). In addition, although it often is considered to be part of extraversion (Watson and Clark, 1997), many researchers consider affiliation to be an indicator of agreeableness (Piedmont et al., 1991). Need for affiliation seems to be negatively related to leadership (Yukl, 1998). These factors suggest that agreeableness should be negatively related to leadership. Due to these contradictory justifications, the possible relationship between agreeableness and leadership is ambiguous. Agreeableness was found to be the least relevant of the Big Five traits in a meta-analysis on the relationship between personality and leadership (Judge et al., 2002). Taken together, the agreeableness of the leader should not be related to NPD teamwork, and, in consequence, we do not provide a hypothesis for this personality variable. 2.3.3. Extraversion Extraversion is characterized by two distinct clusters of traits: (a) sociability, gregariousness, and talkativeness, and (b) assertiveness and dominance (McCrae and Costa, 1987). An extrovert's social confidence and prowess are important in contexts that require high amounts of social interaction (Hogan et al., 1994; Kirkpatrick and Lock, 1991; Lord et al., 1986; Mann, 1959; Shaw, 1981; Stogdill, 1974). Meta-analyses (e.g., Barrick and Mount, 1991) report, that, extraversion is a valid predictor for occupations that have a social interaction component such as management. In some reviews, however, results linking extraversion to leadership are inconsistent (e.g., Bass, 1990). Other reviews, suggest that extraverts should be more likely to emerge as leaders in groups (Lord et al., 1986; Taggar et al., 1999). Gough (1990) shows that both the major facets of extraversion-dominance and sociability are related to self and peer ratings of leadership. Further, extraversion is strongly correlated with leadership in a recent meta-analysis (Judge et al., 2002). High scorers on assertiveness are more forceful (Costa and McCrae, 1992), and extraverted leaders, Judge et al. (2002) note, are more forceful in communicating their opinions. Under stable, certain conditions, characteristic of incremental innovation, product development is considered a complex task for which extensive planning is appropriate and a highly focused series of steps needs to be performed. Brown and Eisenhardt (1995) state that leaders need to communicate their vision, and extraverted leaders should be more forceful in communicating their vision regarding project goals, and plans to project members, engendering high levels of teamwork. Conversely, under conditions of high uncertainty, characteristic of radical innovation, project goals and plans that are forcefully communicated to team members by NPD project leaders should not be helpful. Rather, maintaining flexibility (e.g., Eisenhardt and Tabrizi, 1995), perhaps enabling other members to do the talking should yield effective process performance. Thus, we propose that leader extraversion will have a stronger positive effect on teamwork under low levels of uncertainty.

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Hypothesis 2. The relationship between leader extraversion and NPD teamwork will be stronger when the degree of uncertainty is lower. 2.3.4. Emotional stability Teams with more neurotic (unstable) members tend to be more conflictual and less socially cohesive (Barrick et al., 1998). Researchers suggest that conflict and deliberation which is task related (cognitive) can have benefits (Amason, 1996; Jehn, 1995), depending on the nature of the goals. Under conditions of low uncertainty, characteristic of incremental innovation, teams are given clear, detailed goals, less deliberation is necessary and team members are able to organize the issues and accomplish their tasks efficiently (Cohen and Bailey, 1997). Unstable NPD project leaders can bring about task related conflict and deliberation which is not beneficial given that project goals are clear. On the other hand, radical innovation which operates under conditions of high uncertainty should benefit from unstable NPD project leaders, in that, these individuals can foster the needed cognitive conflict. In fact, an argument could be made that stable leaders who are less conflictual might inhibit the development of breakthrough ideas. Thus, we propose that, leader stability will have a stronger positive effect on teamwork under low levels of uncertainty that exist when innovation is incremental. Hypothesis 3. The relationship between leader stability and NPD teamwork will be stronger when the degree of uncertainty is lower. 2.3.5. Openness Individuals who are open to new experiences value intellectual matters, are interested in unusual thought processes, and are often seen as thoughtful and creative (McCrae and Costa, 1987). Openness to experience also represents individuals' tendencies to be introspective, imaginative, resourceful, and insightful. When Bass (1990) listed the traits that were the best correlates of leadership, originality, a clear hallmark of openness, topped the list. Openness is strongly related to both personality-based and behavioral measures of creativity (Feist, 1998; McCrae and Costa, 1997). Creativity appears to be an important skill of effective leaders. Creativity is one of the skills contained in Yukl's (1998) summary of the skills of leaders, which was based on Stogdill's (1974) earlier review. Research indicates that creativity is linked to effective leadership (Sosik et al., 1998), suggesting that open individuals are more likely to emerge as leaders and be effective leaders. When the degree of uncertainty operating in NPD projects is high, as in radical innovation, we propose that the leader's openness can positively influence NPD teamwork. Open leaders, should be more creative in meshing together firm competencies (e.g., technical or marketing) and strategies with the needs of the market (consumer preferences for style and cost) to create an effective product concept and vision (Brown and Eisenhardt, 1995), that keeps the team focused on a unified goal. Under high levels of uncertainty facing radical NPD projects teams, leaders must seek a wide variety of creative and nontraditional techniques for getting members to successfully accomplish objectives. These NPD teams are not part of the daily activities of the firm (Barczak and Wilemon, 1989). Their leaders constantly manipulate situations and surroundings to enable team members to achieve desired behavior. It is believed that radical NPD project leaders behave in this manner because they have to create a new context in which the team can work, which makes the openness of the leader a desirable trait.

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When greater uncertainty exists, as in radical innovation, the propensity for conflict may increase which in turn, may negatively impact a teams' proficiency in the development process (Song and Montoya-Weisse, 2001). Open individuals are better able to understand and adapt to others' perspectives (Costa and McCrae, 1988; McCrae, 1996). Open NPD project leaders should also be willing to listen to criticism and encourage different points of view, which in turn ought to provide a model for members to acknowledge conflict and work to resolve issues on the team. A leader's acceptance for innovation, i.e., the leader's openness to new ideas, is one of the cited factors necessary for motivating employees to be creative (Amabile et al., 1996). Employee creativity, which is important for radical NPD projects facing uncertain conditions, is enhanced when leaders accept and exhibit an appreciation for cognitive diversity and nonconformity (Redmond et al., 1993). Open leaders should be more effective, in that they focus energies on helping people adopt new ways of thinking and doing (Jassawalla and Saahittal, 2002), and encourage members to freely share information (technical, market) with others on the team. Open leaders should reduce the likelihood of groupthink, on the basis of Janis' (1989) work, by rewarding team behaviors that are intellectually flexible and open (McCrae and Costa, 1997). Taken together, we propose that the openness of the NPD project leader will have a stronger positive effect on teamwork under high levels of uncertainty. Hypothesis 4. The relationship between leader openness and NPD teamwork will be stronger when the degree of uncertainty is higher. 2.3.6. Leader openness­performance link We also consider the direct influence of leader openness on NPD project performance, since openness can have to do with actions and decisions made by the leader that are not only related to teamwork. Innovation is a process rife with uncertainty. Research shows that teams developing innovations deal with uncertainty internal to the firm and external to the firm. To handle this uncertainty, these teams must efficiently gather, process and disseminate information. In this vein, they can be viewed as information creating and processing systems. Leaders of these teams play a critical role in fostering this information (Barczak and Wilemon, 1991). Open individuals are open to new ideas and information (Costa and McCrae, 1992), and effective NPD project leaders should be open to new information whether it is from purchasing, vendor management, or the customer. These leaders do so to develop products that are perceived as new or, different to existing products, or to develop a completely new product that is acceptable in the market. These NPD leaders must also be particularly effective in obtaining resources such as needed talent, and larger budgets for the team (Brown and Eisenhardt, 1995), and open leaders should be more creative when it comes to developing novel strategies for obtaining these resources. Under conditions of high uncertainty, characteristic of radical innovations, development teams face severe challenges because the market is not well understood and the product is still evolving and changing with the market. These innovations require a focus on a learning-based strategy because experimenting is an essential component of the process. Product teams may try a product in the market to learn, improve it, and try it again (Lynn et al., 1996; Rosenbloom and Cusumano, 1987). NPD project leaders high in openness should be more successful on such trial and error research tasks that require maintaining flexibility and learning through experience. These individuals prefer novelty and variety to familiarity and routine, and novel solutions have been consistently related to measures of openness (McCrae, 1987, 1996).

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Creating a vision involves the cognitive ability to mesh together firm competencies and strategies with the needs of the market to create an effective product concept (Brown and Eisenhardt, 1995). Openness has been found to contribute to the development of intellectual potential (Costa and McCrae, 1992). When the level of uncertainty is high, identifying customer needs and translating them into product technical specifications may be more complex. Consequently, when the level of market and technology uncertainty is high, leaders of NPD projects who are high on openness, should be more effective in the task of meshing together the firm's competencies (e.g., technical or marketing) and strategies with the needs of the market (consumer preferences for style and cost) to create an effective product concept, to present to the customer. Taken together, we propose that leader openness will have a stronger positive effect on NPD project performance when the degree of uncertainty is high, characteristic of radical innovation. Hypothesis 5. The direct relationship between leader openness and NPD project performance will be stronger when the degree of uncertainty is higher. 3. Method 3.1. Sample We selected a contact person for 143 NPD projects in a variety of technology-based companies in the northeastern U.S. to participate in this study. To avoid industry bias, we sampled a variety of industries including: telecommunications, computers and electronics, fabricated metal products, information services, pharmaceuticals, chemical manufacturing, food manufacturing, and machinery manufacturing. In each company, the contact person chose NPD professionals as respondents, detailed below. Every respondent was asked by the contact person to select a completed NPD project. Of 159 ``contact people'' asked to participate, 143 returned the questionnaires. Our high response rate (90%) was related to our use of participants in an executive management program, most of whom, worked in R&D organizations. In our sample, 37.6% of the NPD projects involved a new technology, 38.3% involved several new technologies, and 10% of the sample involved non-proved or non-existing technologies, which was consistent with what we expected to investigate at technology-based firms. The median NPD project size was 11 people, the average NPD project size was 23 people and the S.D. was 38. Most projects were from large companies: 69.6% of the projects were from companies with annual incomes over 500 million dollars, 26.8% of the projects were from companies employing 500­5000 workers, and 47.1% of the projects were from companies employing over 5000 people. In each company, the contact person chose primarily product, senior engineering, technical and marketing managers as respondents. All these individuals were project members. Participation in the study was voluntary, and the participants were assured that their responses would be kept confidential. Forty-one percent of the respondents were product managers, 25% and 13% of the respondents were senior engineering or technical managers and the remainder were marketing managers, all of whom were project members. To test for differences in respondent type, one-way analyses of variance (ANOVAs) were performed with all of the major personality constructs as dependent variables and respondent type as the independent variable. No significant differences were found. The respondents were instructed to choose a completed NPD project. Our sample included a range of successful and unsuccessful projects however our data were skewed toward

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successful projects. Some unsuccessful projects were undoubtedly not included because they were never completed. Such restriction in range tends to impact correlations more than regression weights and path coefficients, however, so we feel that this restriction did not seriously bias our results. Further, to ensure a reasonably comparable level of familiarity with the projects and their leaders across the sample, each respondent was asked to choose a NPD project with which he/she was intimately familiar with, and involved with throughout its development. Additionally, product development studies routinely use retrospective methods for reasons of feasibility (e.g., Tatikonda and Montoya-Weiss, 2001; Meyer and Utterback, 1995). To improve the accuracy of retrospective reports, respondents were asked by the contact person to select recent projects, to eliminate the elapsed time between the events of interest and the collection of data. In the current sample, there was one informant per NPD project. Based on our study's empirical findings, we do not believe the respondents' retrospective assessment of the personality of the NPD leader was dependent on whether or not the project was successful. Our results show there were differences in correlations between leader personality and project success depending on the level of uncertainty operating in the NPD project. For example, the openness of the leader was associated with NPD project success and teamwork under high uncertainty and not under low uncertainty. These findings support the argument that single responses do provide good data. Additionally, Klein and Kozlowski (2000) note that while multilevel models are relevant to a majority of organizational phenomena it is not always essential that they be applied. One exception cited (Klein and Kozlowski, 2000) is when researching phenomena that have been previously unexplored as in the current case. Finally, use of self-report data is a common practice in management research, and has led to the so-called `common method variance' problem. Reviews of other research and our own data would indicate that method variance is not a significant issue in the present study. Theoretically, there are several explanations why method variance should not substantially affect our results. First, self-report data is most problematic for topics which generate strong sentiments, such as attitudes (Cote and Buckley, 1987). New product performance is a much less emotionally laden subject, and hence less likely to be distorted by self-reports. Second, social desirability bias often leads to response range compression (Podsakoff and Organ, 1986) which was not evident in our sample. Third, Lukas and Ferrell (2000) and Podsakoff and Organ (1986) found that managers rely on their own self-reports and provide reliable and objective data. 3.2. Measures 3.2.1. NPD teamwork We assessed teamwork behaviors using the following items (Lynn and Akgun, 2003): (1) team members acknowledged conflict and worked to resolve issues on the team; (2) team members helped others on the team by sharing knowledge and information; (3) team members encouraged diverse perspectives and differing points of view from others on the team; (4) team members demonstrated interest and enthusiasm during team activities; (5) team members acknowledged the contributions made by others on the team; (6) team members were working together toward a unified goal; (7) team members would freely share information (technical, market, etc.) with others on the team. Cronbach's alpha for the teamwork measure was .93.

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3.2.2. Personality As part of a questionnaire designed to measure practices supportive of team learning, development speed, and new product success (Lynn et al., 2000) five single items were developed to assess leader personality (five-item measure of the Big Five). Building on past research (e.g., Costa and McCrae, 1992; Lindner, 1998; McCrae and Costa, 1999; Tett et al., 1991), each item of this measure of personality was designed to measure a single Big-Five trait (Appendix A). We obtained evidence to support the construct validity of this five-item measure of the Big Five as follows. In one study (Lindner, 1998), 193 students responded to the Five-item measure of the Big Five, Goldberg's Adjective Checklist (1992) and the NEOFFI (Costa and McCrae, 1992), all of which measure the Big Five personality traits. (Note that there was no overlap in items between the three personality measures). Correlations among similar constructs between the Five-item measure of the Big Five and Goldberg's Adjective Checklist were .67, .61, .63, .55, .66 for extraversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism and openness to experience respectively, providing evidence of convergent validity. The correlations among similar constructs between the five-item measure of the Big-Five personality traits and the NEO-FFI were .56, .56, .64, .55, .50, respectively. In both analyses, correlations across dissimilar constructs were much lower, providing evidence of discriminant validity. For comparative purposes, the convergent validities between the NEO-FFI and Goldberg's Adjective Checklist were very similar to the convergent validities reported above, .59, .61, .72, .64, .42 respectively for each of the five personally traits. These results are quite similar to those reported by other researchers. For example, Goldberg (1992) reported correlations between similar personality dimensions from a set of 100 Big Five markers and the NEO-PI (a Big-Five personality measure, Costa and McCrae, 1985) that ranged from .46 to .69 as evidence of the construct validity of those markers. Barrick and Mount (1993) reported correlations among similar personality dimensions from the personal characteristic inventory (PCI, a Big Five personality measure), and the NEO-PI that ranged from .56 to .71 as evidence of the construct validity of the PCI. In summary, the rather high correlations of similar constructs of the Five-item measure of the Big Five with those on the NEO-FFI and Goldberg's Adjective Checklist, and the low correlations between dissimilar constructs, which are similar to those reported by other researchers, provides evidence about the construct validity of the personality measure used in the current study. Empirical evidence supporting the construct validity of this Five-Item measure of the Big Five was confirmed in the current study as well. Table 2 provides important evidence of discriminant validity between the five personality variables, with generally moderate correlations between leader personality variables, which are comparable to correlations reported elsewhere for the FFM of personality (e.g., Barrick et al., 2002; Boudreau et al., 2001). Further, leader personality was differentially related to this study's criteria (teamwork and performance) providing additional evidence that, this measure is a useful measure of the Big-Five traits. The NPD development professionals in the current study rated the NPD project leader's personality, using the five-item measure of the Big Five, on a scale from 1 to 5 (Appendix A). Justification for using observer ratings of personality can be found in past research (Aronson, 1998; Mount et al., 1994). Observers' assessments of leader personality are at least as valid as self-assessments because they are based on observations of this individual, almost exclusively in the work environment. On the other hand, individuals, (NPD project leaders) see themselves in numerous situations, such as at home, at play, and at work. Consequently, self-ratings of personality have less point-to-point correspondence between the predictor and the criterion.

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3.2.3. Uncertainty Classification of NPD projects into high and low uncertainty groups was based on information provided by the respondents to two items representing technological and market uncertainty. Both items were rated on a scale ranging from 0 (strongly disagree) to 10 (strongly agree) and were as follows: ``The technology required to develop this product (R&D) was totally new to our company'', and ``This product had to be sold to people or organizations outside our company's traditional customer base''. Although prior research (e.g., Lynn and Akgun, 1998; Chen et al., 2005) made distinctions between market and technological uncertainty we chose to focus on overall uncertainty because our interest was in leader behavior under conditions of high and low uncertainty. We first took the average of the two items and then dichotomized at the scale midpoint. Thus, we divided projects into those that were more or less certain. This yielded 75 projects operating under low levels of uncertainty, and 68 operating under high levels of uncertainty. 3.2.4. NPD project performance Our performance measure included two different criteria, NPD success and speed. The criteria were each assessed with multiple items rated on a scale ranging from 0 (strongly disagree) to 10 (strongly agree) (Lynn et al., 2000). The following items were included in the success measure: this project (1) overall, met or exceeded sales expectations; (2) met or exceeded profit expectations; (3) met or exceeded return on investment expectations; (4) met or exceeded overall senior management's expectations; (5) met or exceeded market share expectations; (6) met or exceeded customer expectations. Cronbach's alpha for the success measure was .96. We assessed NPD speed using the following items (Lynn et al., 2000): this project (1) was developed and launched faster than the major competitor for a similar product; (2) was completed in less time than what was considered normal and customary for our industry; (3) was launched on or ahead of the original schedule developed at initial project go-ahead; (4) top management was pleased with the time it took us from specs to full commercialization. Cronbach's alpha for the speed measure was .86. 3.2.5. Analyses Structural equation modeling (maximum likelihood estimation) was used to test the hypothesized model (LISREL VIII, Joreskog and Sorbon, 1993). To test the effect of uncertainty as a moderator, we completed a two-stage analysis (Bergman and Drasgow, 2003): We compared two models (each) for the criteria of speed and success. The first model constrained the solution to be the same for both high and low uncertainty and the second solution allowed the path coefficients to be unconstrained (i.e., a different solution for high and low uncertainty). If the relationships described in this model between leader personality, teamwork and NPD project performance are moderated by uncertainty, we should see a better fit when the constraints on path coefficients are not imposed. 4. Results The means and standard deviations for all leader personality variables, NPD teamwork and project performance for the entire sample, and under different uncertainty conditions are reported in Table 1. No significant differences in means existed between NPD projects operating under conditions of high and low uncertainty with respect to all leader personality variables.

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Table 1 Means and standard deviations for leader personality variables and NPD project outcomesa Variable Entire sample Mean Conscientiousness Emotional stability Openness Extraversion Agreeableness Speed Success

a b c

Low uncertaintyb S.D. 0.80 0.83 0.74 0.82 0.79 2.54 2.89 Mean 4.62 4.30 4.26 4.07 4.12 6.67 6.51 S.D. 0.74 0.78 0.75 0.81 0.71 2.42 2.81

High uncertaintyc Mean 4.36 4.28 4.40 4.13 4.06 6.17 6.04 S.D. 0.85 0.88 0.74 0.83 0.87 2.65 2.98

4.49 4.30 4.33 4.10 4.09 6.43 6.28

N = 143 for the total sample. N = 75 under low uncertainty conditions. N = 68 under high uncertainty conditions.

The intercorrelations for the five leader personality variables, teamwork and NPD project performance are reported in Table 2. 4.1. Modeling results 4.1.1. Moderator The path coefficients from LISREL's completely standardized solution for each of the models used in our moderator analysis are listed in Table 3 and in Fig. 4 for the entire sample for NPD success and NPD speed. We ran two models (each) for speed and success. The first model constrained the solution to be the same for both high and low uncertainty and the second solution allowed the path coefficients to be unconstrained (i.e., a different solution for high and low uncertainty). As hypothesized, results show that conscientiousness, extroversion and emotional stability have significant indirect path coefficients for NPD project success and speed through teamwork, and the coefficients are stronger under low uncertainty conditions. Openness has a significant path coefficient for success and speed as well as a significant indirect path coefficient through teamwork under high uncertainty but not under low uncertainty conditions. Agreeableness was not linked to our criteria under either condition of uncertainty.

Table 2 Correlations between leader personality variables and NPD project performance criteria for the entire samplea Variable Speed Teamwork Extraversion (E) Agreeableness (A) Conscientiousness (C) Emotional Stability (S) Openness (O)

a * **

Success .56 .50** .12 .10 .14 .13 .17

**

Speed .46 ** .13 .11 .15 .14 .18

Teamwork

E

A

C

S

.27 * .23 .32 * .30 * .38

.18 .13 .10 .26 *

.26 * .57 ** .48 **

.25* .47**

.42 **

N = 143. p < .05 (two tailed). p < .01 (two tailed).

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Table 3 Standardized path coefficients for constrained and unconstrained solutions with success and speed as the dependent variablesa Leader personalityb Extraversion Agreeableness Conscientiousness Emotional stability Openness Openness to success Openness to speed

a b c d * **

Constrained .25 * À.11 .21 * .26 * .10 À.09 À.09

Low uncertaintyc .27 ** À.12 .23 ** .28 ** .11 .09 À.07

High uncertaintyd .02 .01 .10 .07 .36** .32** .23**

N = 143 for the constrained solution. Path coefficients between leader personality and teamwork, except when specified. N = 75 under low uncertainty conditions. N = 68 under high uncertainty conditions. p < .05 (two tailed). p < .01 (two tailed).

Finally, NPD teamwork has a significant direct path for both criteria (success and speed). Fit statistics for each model can be found in Table 4. For both speed and success the fit statistics suggest that the fit is slightly better for the unconstrained solutions: The root-mean-square errors of approximation for the unconstrained solutions (RMSEAs) for the models were .0509 and .0750 for success and speed respectively. The Nonnormed fit indices (NNFI) for the models were .9570 and .9230, where as, the normed fit indices (NFI) for the models were .9520 and .9460 for each of the criteria. LISREL's compariative-fit indices (CFI) were .9900 and .9820 for success and speed. Lastly, chi-square values were 12.1500 and 13.9820. Support for our fit statistics results can be found in previous research. Byrne (1998) and Steiger (1990) recommended that the RMSEA should be less than .08 or .10, respectively. Other researchers (Hu and Bentler, 1999; Bentler and Bonett, 1980) recommended that the NFI and CFI values should also be greater than .90. Thus, the fit statistics results in the current study suggest that the model fits each uncertainty group reasonably well, and the fit is better under greater uncertainty. The total standardized direct effects of leader personality variables on new product project performance for high and low uncertainty are reported in Table 5. 4.2. Post hoc analysis 4.2.1. Mechanisms driving the leader personality teamwork relationship We conducted a series of post hoc analyses, to identify possible mechanisms that might drive the leader personality teamwork relationship, using the limited additional data we had gathered. For example, results (Table 6) show that leader conscientiousness was related to various recording and filing behaviors (data gathering/information management); whether the NPD process was continuously analyzed; and to clarity of project goals and plans--(choice of direction). These behaviors should help project members to be attentive to the plan and engender these members to work together toward a unified goal. Additionally, leader openness was related to conflict management; whether market and technical information was summarized in meaningful ways to reduce complexity (meaningful information was gathered); to creative problem solving; and whether the team had a clear vision (choice of direction). These behaviors should help members to work together and enable to create an effective product concept to

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Fig. 4. Standardized path coefficients for the entire sample and for high and low uncertainty. Results of LISREL VIII test linking NPD project leader personality with teamwork and NPD project performance for the entire sample and for high and low uncertainty. *P < .05.

Table 4 Fit indices for constrained and unconstrained solutionsa Fit index Success Constrained RMSEA NNFI NFI CFI x2 d.f.

a

Speed Unconstrained .0509 .9570 .9520 .9900 12.1500 10 Constrained .0802 .9050 .9020 .9620 25.3340 17 Unconstrained .0750 .9230 .9460 .9820 13.9820 10

.0532 .9490 .9150 .9790 21.3490 17

RMSEA: the root-mean-square error of approximation; NNFI: nonnormed fit index; NFI: normed fit index; CFI: comparative fit index; x2: chi-square

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Table 5 Total standardized direct effects of leader personality variables on new product project performance for high and low uncertainty Variable Success Low uncertainty Extroversion Agreeableness Conscientiousness Stability Openness .129 À.058 .109 .134 .144 High uncertainty .004 .002 .017 .012 .384 Speed Low uncertainty .142 À.063 .119 .148 -.031 High uncertainty .007 .003 .033 .023 .413

Table 6 Post hoc analyses: mechanisms that drive the leader personality teamwork relationshipa Mechanisms: project member behaviors Leader personality E Data gathering/information management Action items resulting from team staff meetings were regularly recorded Technical quality prototype test results were proficiently recorded Overall, most information relating to this project was proficiently recorded Information collected by the team (e.g. test results) was coded and sorted to be understood easily by other team members A central file on this project was kept that included initial concepts, engineering specs, prototype protocols, and customer input/reaction to early concepts During the project, the above information could easily have been obtained on the same day requested It would have been extremely easy to obtain the information within the time needed Project information was stored on a computer-based computer information system Past project reviews were filed with the central project file During the project, the new product development process (from concept through launch) was continuously analyzed Choice of direction The overall business goals were clear The technical goals were clear The team had a clear understanding of target customers' needs and wants The team followed a clear plan--a roadmap with measurable milestones The team had a clear vision of the required product features Conflict management Team members acknowledged conflict and worked to resolve issues on the team Team members encouraged diverse perspectives and differing points of view from others on the team Meaningful information was gathered Market information was summarized to reduce its complexity Market information was organized in meaningful ways A C X x X x x S O

X X

X X

X X x X X X X X

X X

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Mechanisms: project member behaviors

Leader personality E A C S O X X X

Technical information was summarized to reduce its complexity Technical information was organized in meaningful ways Creative problem solving Team members practiced what-if analysis extensively to understand possible market and technical scenarios Project members' input Information captured on customers' needs and wants was shared quickly throughout the team Test results on this product were shared quickly throughout the team Teamwork behaviors: coordination/information and knowledge Sharing Team members helped others on the team by sharing knowledge and information Team members were working together toward a unified goal Team members would freely share information (technical, market, etc.) with others on the team Team members demonstrated interest and enthusiasm during team activities Team members acknowledged the contributions made by others on the team X X x X x X X X x X x X X x x x X X

X X X X X

Behaviors that were significantly related to leader personality factors are listed: x in lower case = p < .05, X in upper case = p < .01. a E: extraversion; A: agreeableness; C: conscientiousness; S: stability; O: openness.

present to the customer. Leader openness was also related to whether diverse perspectives were encouraged in the team as detailed in the current study's theoretical section. Both these leader personality traits and the remaining factors (stability and extraversion) were differentially related to teamwork behaviors (coordination/information and knowledge sharing) as hypothesized. 4.2.2. Direct effect for all personality variables on project performance Based on a reviewer's suggestion, although not hypothesized, we evaluated four additional models with direct paths for all personality variables to project performance (i.e., either speed or success). We ran two models with speed: one in which we constrained the path coefficients to be equal under the two conditions of uncertainty, and one in which we allowed the path coefficients to vary. We ran parallel models for success. In no case was the direct path for any of the additional personality variables significant. 5. Discussion Our focus was on testing the affect of leader personality on NPD project performance under differing levels of uncertainty. Our model used teamwork as a mediating variable between leader personality and NPD performance. As we hypothesized, leader openness had a significant influence on NPD project performance as well as a significant indirect influence through teamwork under high uncertainty but not under low uncertainty conditions. Additionally, leader conscientiousness, extroversion and emotional stability had a significant indirect influence on NPD project performance through teamwork, and the influence was stronger under low

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uncertainty conditions. A number of recent studies examined the effect of leader personality on general leader effectiveness (e.g., Moynihan and Peterson, 2001; Peterson et al., 2003) however, we are not aware of studies that examined the influence of specific leader traits on performance via their effect on teamwork under different levels of uncertainty, in the context of new product development projects. Further, although many argue that leadership effectiveness should be assessed in terms of team or organizational effectiveness (e.g., Hogan et al., 1994), in reality most studies evaluate leadership effectiveness in terms of ratings provided by superiors, peers, or subordinates (Judge et al., 2002). This meta-analysis by Judge and colleagues did not find a single leadership study that had used group performance as the leadership effectiveness measure. More recently, two empirical studies have linked transformational leadership to unit-level performance criteria. Bass and colleagues (Bass et al., 2003) found that transformational leadership predicted unit performance in infantry teams, and Dvir and colleagues (Dvir et al., 2002) found that transformational leadership training resulted in better unit performance relative to groups that did not receive training. Our research contributes to sparse research on the effect of leader traits on effectiveness assessed in terms of NPD project performance, and moderated by uncertainty. Findings show that, the effect of leader personality on NPD teamwork and performance depends on the levels of uncertainty operating in NPD projects, suggesting that different personality styles are more effective depending upon these conditions. To date, these ideas have not been examined extensively. Our results suggest that, under high levels of uncertainty, characteristic of radical innovation, open leaders should be more effective in helping project members consider new or alternative ideas and innovative ways of solving the problems necessary to achieve the goals of the NPD project. Under high levels of uncertainty, as in radical innovation, it is often hard for the buyers to understand the product or how they would use it. Thus, it becomes the leader's role to understand buyers' behavior and requirements, and balance that with the technological advances of the product. Leaders who are open to information from the customer should be more effective in preventing their team from loosing sight of their goal to develop significantly new products with buyer's desire. Moreover, under uncertain settings, the dominant problem-solving model is characterized by experiential and iterative product development (Brown and Eisenhardt, 1995; Eisenhardt and Tabrizi, 1995). NPD project leaders high in openness should be more successful on such trial and error tasks. Further, functional diversity (items measuring functional diversity in the current research included: a cross-functional team managed this project; team members worked in several different functional areas before working on this project) in NPD increases the amount and variety of information available to team members. This broadens team members' understanding of the product development problem and of potential solutions and increases their ability to solve complex problems (Milliken and Martins, 1996). Under high levels of uncertainty, involving functionally diverse people in all development activities offers additional challenges for integrating diverse information, a task that open leaders should perform more effectively. Conversely, under more certain conditions, characteristic of incremental innovation, extensive planning is appropriate, making the conscientiousness of the leader a desirable trait. Conscientious individuals are task focused and should encourage team members to be attentive to the plan, engendering them to work together toward a unified goal. Further, extraverted leaders are more forceful in communicating their vision regarding project goals and plans, fostering high levels teamwork. Moreover, under low uncertainty, as in incremental innovation, unstable NPD project leaders can bring about task related conflict and deliberation which is not beneficial given

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that project goals are clear. In fact, an argument could be made that under conditions of high uncertainty, characteristic of radical innovation, stable leaders who are less conflictual might inhibit the development of breakthrough ideas, making this trait in a NPD project leader less desirable. 5.1. Limitations and future research Future research should consider the effects of different combinations of personality characteristics. It is quite reasonable to conceive that different personality characteristics could interact in their effect on NPD teamwork (e.g., Warr et al., 2005; Witt et al., 2002), although such interactive effects have seldom been demonstrated. It is equally possible that some of the relationships could be curvilinear. For instance, for NPD project leaders operating under conditions of low uncertainty, a moderately high level of conscientiousness could facilitate teamwork, in that it keeps all members attentive to task details, while extreme conscientiousness, could promote rigidity that is maladaptive. Our focus was on testing a general model that looks at how leader personality influences new product teamwork and performance. Our findings relating openness to NPD project performance under high levels of uncertainty make an especially important contribution, since it is the least understood of the Big Five traits. With a few exceptions, openness has not been related to many applied criteria (Judge et al., 2002; McCrae, 1996). The current study's results show that leader openness is significantly related to NPD teamwork and performance when conditions of uncertainty are high, as in radical innovation. As always is the case, there are reasons to exercise caution in generalizing from any one study. One limitation of our results is the use of single respondents and the possibility of monomethod bias. Prior research has supported the discriminant validity of our measures (Lynn et al., 2000; Chen et al., 2005). In the latter study by Chen and colleagues, an extensive series of analyses was performed to examine response bias. The evidence in that study supported the construct validity of the measures and suggested that although some method variance exists, it is not a serious problem. Moreover, Avolio et al. (1991) note that studies employing single-source methodology may be biased by artificially high intercorrelations because of an overall positive, or negative, response bias. Avolio and colleagues emphasize, however, that simply assuming that single-source data are less valid than multi-source data is overly simplistic, boosting our argument presented in the current study's method section. Additionally, much of the research on the effect of single-source bias has been done with instruments that involve social perception (e.g., ratings of the performance of peers or supervisors). While it is not our intent to minimize the potential effects of response bias, the kinds of information sought in the present survey with respect to NPD success and speed tended to be, more objective in nature than many surveys used in research in the social sciences. Implicit theories, cognitive schema, and other cognitive frameworks applied by respondents to social-perceptual stimuli, may not apply to the same extent with our survey. Thus, responding to questions regarding NPD performance should be based on objective data. In addition, our data support the relative lack of response bias. Our results show discriminant validity between dissimilar constructs with moderate correlations between the personality variables, and the personality variables are differentially related to NPD project performance criteria. Future research should consider gathering data from additional sources. Archival data for NPD project performance could be obtained as an alternative measure. Additionally, data for a single NPD project could be gathered from multiple sources. Personality responses could be provided by the leader and performance ratings by the senior manager overseeing the development project or by the customer. Another variation of this approach is to obtain complete data from multiple sources so that the inter-rater reliability and response bias issues can be examined directly.

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The methodology used to gather data on the personality of the leaders may have weakened the magnitude of some of the validities that we found. However, empirical evidence supporting the construct validity of this five-item measure of personality traits has been provided (Lindner, 1998), replicated in the current study (Table 2) and the discriminant validity results are comparable with results reported elsewhere for the five-factor model (e.g., Barrick et al., 2002; Boudreau et al., 2001). The validities obtained between leader personality and NPD project performance are also similar to the validities reported in the literature (e.g., Judge et al., 2002). Moreover, our study points to the potential usefulness of this five-item personality measure for researching questions on personality performance relations. Most inventories assessing personality are lengthy. The fiveitem personality measure allowed us to gather data and conduct comparisons between specific leader traits, specific teamwork behaviors and NPD speed and success under different levels of uncertainty. Gathering this data from busy NPD professionals would be difficult using lengthy personality inventories. By combining the five-item personality measure with data on teamwork, the criteria and uncertainty levels, we were able to substantiate the leader personality­teamwork­ performance link. In short, we were able to answer some difficult theoretical questions because of our use of an alternative tool for personality assessment. A final methodological limitation is limited statistical power, especially in the comparisons between uncertainty conditions. Statistical power was limited by the operational definition of uncertainty used in the present study. Future research conducted with larger samples would allow the formation of additional levels of uncertainty, leading to stronger findings. Future research might also examine other variables (e.g., culture, morale) that mediate the relationship between leader personality and NPD project performance. For example, open leaders are open to new ideas, emphasize the importance of seeking differing perspectives when solving problems, encourage non-traditional thinking to deal with traditional problems and are open to criticism. These behaviors are central to norms associated with an adaptive culture (Kotter and Heskett, 1992), and in turn should have a strong influence on new product performance when uncertainty is high. 5.2. Practical implications First, we recommend to re-consider assignment criteria to include personality factors along with functional expertise when selecting employees to lead in the field of new product development. High levels of conscientiousness, stability and extraversion might be established as selection criteria, for individuals who are being considered to lead NPD projects operating under certain environments, characteristic of incremental innovation, where extensive planning is appropriate and members need to work together to perform a highly focused series of steps. However, when the level of uncertainty operating in NPD projects is high, characteristic of radical innovation, results show that selecting leaders who are high on openness is crucial for engendering teamwork and performance. Our sample means for low and high uncertainty, showed no difference in means for the leader personality variables, suggesting that there might be considerable room for improvement by using personality to assign leaders to NPD projects depending on the level of uncertainty expected. Secondly, an understanding of the personality profile of employees assigned to lead NPD projects should allow better developmental planning and coaching of these individuals. For example, a highly open individual selected to lead a new product development project, operating under conditions of uncertainty, as in radical innovation, might be coached to use this strength to seek a wide variety of creative and nontraditional techniques for motivating team members to

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accomplish the project's objectives. Radical innovation involves a great deal of learning and improvising. The selected leader who is high on openness can be coached to use this asset to encourage and handle new ideas, to learn more about the market requirements and the technological advances of the product, that are necessary to create a product concept and vision, and successfully bring the product to market. 6. Conclusion This study makes an important contribution to our knowledge of how leader personality affects team performance. Several studies have examined the effect of leader personality on general leader effectiveness, however, unlike most previous work, our study examined the effects of specific leader personality traits on NPD project performance via their effect on teamwork under different levels of uncertainty that development projects face. This study reemphasizes the assumed importance of teamwork as a process variable linking personality to organizational performance and confirms the direct relationship between the openness of the leader and performance, as well as the indirect relationship through teamwork under a high degree of uncertainty.

Appendix A. Five-item measure of the Big-Five personality traits 1. Extraversion: the extent to which the NPD project leader was sociable, talkative, assertive, active (extroverted) versus retiring, sober, reserved, cautious (introverted)

Highly extroverted ­(1) Somewhat extroverted ­(2) Neither extroverted nor introverted ­(3) Somewhat introverted ­(4) Highly introverted ­(5)

Please place an ``X'' in the cell that best describes your NPD project leader.

2. Agreeableness: the extent to which the NPD project leader was good-natured, gentle, cooperative, forgiving, hopeful (agreeable) versus irritable, ruthless, suspicious, uncooperative, inflexible (disagreeable)

Highly agreeable ­(1) Somewhat agreeable ­(2) Neither agreeable nor disagreeable ­(3) Somewhat disagreeable ­(4) Highly disagreeable ­(5)

Please place an ``X'' in the cell that best describes your NPD project leader.

3. Conscientiousness: the extent to which the NPD project leader was careful, thorough, responsible, organized, self-disciplined, scrupulous (conscientious) versus irresponsible, disorganized, undisciplined, unscrupulous (unconscientious)

Highly conscientious ­(1) Somewhat conscientious ­(2) Neither conscientious nor unconscientious ­(3) Somewhat unconscientious ­(4) Highly unconscientious ­(5)

Please place an ``X'' in the cell that best describes your NPD project leader.

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Appendix A (Continued ) 4. Emotional stability: the extent to which the NPD project leader was calm, enthusiastic, poised, secure (emotionally stable) versus depressed, angry, emotional, insecure (emotionally unstable)

Highly emotionally stable ­(1) Somewhat emotionally stable ­(2) Neither emotionally stable nor emotionally unstable ­(3) Somewhat emotionally unstable ­(4) Highly emotionally unstable ­(5)

Please place an ``X'' in the cell that best describes your NPD project leader.

5. Openness to experience: the extent to which the NPD project leader was imaginative, sensitive, intellectual, polished (open to experience) versus down to earth, insensitive, narrow, crude, simple (unopen to experience)

Highly open to experience ­(1) Somewhat open to experience ­(2) Neither open to experience nor unopen to experience ­(3) Somewhat unopen to experience ­(4) Highly unopen to experience ­(5)

Please place an ``X'' in the cell that best describes your NPD project leader.

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